Dr. Sheri Molnar

Seismology, Geophysics, Geology, Geotechnical Engineering

Sheri Molnar

Associate Professor
Ph.D. Univ. of Victoria, Earthquake Seismolog, 2011
Postdoc, Univ. British Columbia, Earthquake Engineering, 2012-2014
Office: BGS 1040
Lab: BGS 0155 and BGS 1020
Phone: 519-661-2111 x87031
Fax: 519-661-3198
Email: smolnar8@uwo.ca

Research Interests

Seismic hazards, with a focus on earthquake site effects and and microzonation mapping; Surface seismic field techniques for shallow crustal velocity structure; Numerical (parallel computing) wave propagation simulation of scenario earthquakes; Seismic risk and loss estimation; Ambient vibration testing and modal analysis; Soil structure interaction


  • 2017-2023: Metro Vancouver Seismic Microzonation Mapping Project, https://metrovanmicromap.ca/
  • 2016-2022: NSERC Discovery, Improving earthquake ground motion prediction across Canada
  • 2019-2021: New Frontiers Research Fund, Reducing the catastrophic risk of a Cascadia megathrust earthquake
  • 2017-2021: Canadian Foundation of Innovation, John R. Evans Leaders Fund, Seismic Vibrations and Excitations Laboratory
  • 2015-2020: NSERC Collaborative Research Development, Linking hazard, exposure and risk across multiple hazards
  • 2017-2018: NSERC Engage, Pilot ambient noise tomography study for mineral exploration
  • 2016-2018: Ontario Ministry of Transportation Highway Infrastructure Innovation Funding, Geophysical methods for subsurface characterization and determination of shear-wave velocity profiles”


Selected Publications

  • A. Fallah Yeznabad, S. Molnar, H. El Naggar, H. Ghofrani, 2022. Estimation of probabilistic seismic sliding displacement and pseudo-static coefficients (k15) for seismic stability assessment of slopes in the southern Lower Mainland, British Columbia, Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 161, 107364, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soildyn.2022.107364.  
  • J. Assaf, S. Molnar, H. El Naggar, A. Sirohey, 2022. Seismic site characterization in Fraser River delta in Metropolitan Vancouver, Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 161,107384, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soildyn.2022.107384.
  • S. Molnar, A. Sirohey, J. Assaf, S. Castellaro, C. Cornou, B. Cox, B. Guillier, B. Hassani, H. Kawase, S. Matsushima, F.J. Sánchez-Sesma, A. Yong, 2022. A review of the microtremor horizontal-to-vertical spectral ratio (MHVSR) method. Journal of Seismology, https://doi.org/10.1007/s10950-021-10062-9.  
  • A. Bilson Darko, S. Molnar, A. Sadrekarimi, 2021. Reviewing Earthquake Site Classification Methods at Ontario Highway Sites, Journal of Earthquake Engineering, https://doi.org/10.1080/13632469.2021.1996488.
  • S. Ladak, S. Molnar, S. Palmer, 2021. Multi-method site characterization to verify the hard rock (site class A) assumption at 25 seismograph stations across Eastern Canada. Earthquake Spectra, 37(S1), 1487-1515, https://doi.org/10.1177%2F87552930211001076.
  • A. Fallah Yeznabad, S. Molnar and M. H. El Naggar, 2021. Probabilistic solution for the seismic sliding displacement of slopes in Greater Vancouver. Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 140, 106393, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soildyn.2020.106393
  • P. He, J. Gonzalez-Hurtado, T. Newson, H. Hong, M. Postman and S. Molnar. Field monitoring of the ground vibrations adjacent to an onshore wind turbine foundation, Canadian Geotechnical Journal, published online 2 June 2020.
  • S. Molnar, J. Assaf, A. Sirohey, S. R. Adhikari, 2020. Overview of local site effects and seismic microzonation mapping in Metropolitan Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Engineering Geology, Special Issue “Seismic site response estimation for microzonation studies promoting the resilience of urban centers”, 270, 5 June 2020, 105568.
  • A. Bilson Darko, S. Molnar, A. Sadrekarimi, 2020. Blind comparison of non-invasive shear wave velocity profiling with invasive methods at bridge sites in Windsor, Ontario. Soil Dynamics and Earthquake Engineering, 129, 105906, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.soildyn.2019.105906
  • J. Kukovica, H. Ghofrani, S. Molnar, K. Assatourians, 2019. Probabilistic Seismic Hazard Analysis of Victoria, British Columbia: Considering an Active Fault Zone in the Nearby Leech River Valley, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 109, 2050-2062.
  • S. Molnar, JF Cassidy, S. Castellaro, C. Cornou, H. Crow, JA Hunter, S. Matsushima, FJ Sanchez-Sesma, and A. Yong, 2018. Application of MHVSR for site characterization: State-of-the-art, Surveys in Geophysics, 39, 4, 613-631.
  • J. Farrugia, G. M. Atkinson, S. Molnar, 2018. Validation of 1D earthquake site characterization methods with observed earthquake site amplification in Alberta, Canada, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 108, 291-308, doi.org/10.1785/012017014.
  • S. Molnar, J. Onwuemeka, and S. Adhikari, 2017. Rapid post-earthquake microtremor measurements for site amplification and shear-wave velocity profiling in Kathmandu, Nepal., Earthquake Spectra, 33, S1, S55-S72, doi.org/10.1193/121916EQS245M.
  • J. Farrugia, S. Molnar, G. M. Atkinson, 2017. Non-invasive techniques for site characterization of Alberta seismic stations based on shear-wave velocity, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 107, 2885-2902, doi: 10.1785/0120170086.
  • F. Jackson, S. Molnar, H. Ghofrani, G. Atkinson, and J. F. Cassidy, 2017. Ground motions of the December 2015 M4.7 Vancouver Island earthquake: Attenuation and site response, Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, 107, 2903-2916, doi: 10.1785/0120170071.


  • Earth Sciences 1022: Earth Rocks!
  • Earth Sciences 4551Z/9509: Geophysics Field Techniques
  • Earth Sciences 4423/9508: Applied Seismolog
  • HRR 9XXX: Natural hazard and risk evaluation in a team-based and experiential-learning environment

Former Graduate Students

  • J. Onwuemeka, course-based MSc Geophysics
  • N. Bissessar, course-based MSc Geophysics (Co-Supervised)
  • J. Farrugia, MSc Geophysics (Co-Supervised), “The first earthquake site assessments in Alberta, Canada”, https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/4935/
  • F. Jackson, MSc Geophysics, “Assessment of earthquake site amplification and application of passive seismic methods for improved site classification in the Greater Vancouver region, British Columbia”, https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/4938/
  • A. Bilson Darko, MSc Geophysics (Co-Supervised), “Robust earthquake site classification assessment at Ontario bridge sites”, https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/5903/
  • J. Kukovica, MSc Geophysics (Co-Supervised), “Considering a seismically active Leech River Valley Fault zone in southwestern British Columbia”, https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/6184/
  • S. Ladak, MSc Geophysics, “Earthquake site characterization of rock sites in Eastern Canada and stiff ground sites in Vancouver, British Columbia”, https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/6972/

Future Students

There are no current opportunities. Looking for MSc and/or PhD student(s) starting Summer 2022. Contact smolnar8@uwo.ca with resume or CV and copy of transcript(s). Applications must be received through Western’s online system by January 2022.